The Environment Agency is a non-departmental public body who are sponsored by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA). The Environment Agency is the main body in charge of the maintenance of the River Stour as well as monitoring its water levels, quality, resources, conservation and ecology. The Environment Agency states that they have a duty to “promote the conservation of the water environment, the natural beauty of rivers and wetlands and the wildlife that lives there”. This role also allows them to assess any proposed works adjacent to main rivers and the environmental impacts they may have. They are also responsible for managing the risk of flooding from the River Stour, co-ordinating the development of Local Flood Risk Management Strategies. Some of their work includes; weed cutting to maintain the natural balance of the ecosystem, strict monitoring of building or maintenance planned on river bank or flood plains and maintaining or implementing flood defences where applicable.